Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The First Round

not to be confused with a "play-in," where a team has to win a tie-breaker to advance to the Conference tournament. Tonight's first-round Centennial Conference men's and women's basketball contests have clear favorites and underdogs. The Muhlenberg men swept Haverford during the regular season, while the McDaniel women did the same against Dickinson. That said, last winter saw the #5 men's seed win the first-round game and in 2007, the fifth-seeded women's team won the championship.

Haverford at Muhlenberg (Men's Basketball)
The Mules (11-7 CC, 15-10) welcome the Fords (9-9, 12-12) to Memorial Hall in Berg's first home playoff games since 2002. The teams’ first two meetings this year were quite different. In the CC opener for both teams, back on December 3, Muhlenberg shot 53.8 percent from the field en route to a big 73-41 home win. Two months later, on February 4, the Mules survived a late comeback effort to eke out a 53-50 victory at Gooding Arena. 'Berg is 5-9 all-time in the Centennial tournament with four of those victories coming in the title years of 1995 and 1998. Haverford is 2-4 all-time in the tournament and reached the Conference final two years ago. Muhlenberg leads the all-time series, 43-12, and has four straight wins vs. the Fords in Allentown. The Mules were picked seventh in the preseason CC coaches poll, while the Fords were slotted in at No. 8. The Cardinal and Gray's Peter Barnes (2nd) and Ryan Foster (HM) were named to the All-CC teams, as was Haverford's Greg Rosnick (HM).

Tale of the Tape MUHL HAV
Scoring Offense 68.6 56.2
Scoring Defense 63.6 59.8
FG Percentage 41.6 39.4
3-Pt FG Pct 30.4 28.4
FT Percentage 68.4 66.7
Rebound Margin +6.4 -2.1

Dickinson at McDaniel (Women's Basketball)
The Green Terror (11-7 CC, 14-11) and the Red Devils (11-7, 14-11) have been playing basketball against each other since 1970 with McDaniel holding a 43-24 after winning both games this season. The Green and Gold won 65-56 in Carlisle and 79-56 at the Gill Center. It was the third straight home win for the Terror vs. the Devils who have met in the playoffs in 1996 and 2005. That night 13 years ago, Dickinson senior Annie Guzek set a Conference playoff record with 35 points in a Devil victory. Keep an eye on the matchup of the second-team All-Conference guards - McDaniel's Ali Moreland and Dickinson's Brooke Muller.

Tale of the Tape DC MCD
Scoring Offense 63.6 65.2
Scoring Defense 60.7 61.4
FG Percentage 39.7 38.3
3-Pt FG Pct 28.6 28.0
FT Percentage 78.9 72.4
Rebound Margin -6.4 +1.1

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